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A Chicago-bound United Express flight was diverted to Indianapolis after a 10,000-foot vertical drop.
United Express Flight 5919 was headed from Charlotte, North Carolina, to Illinois when it suddenly plummeted and was diverted to Indianapolis International Airport shortly after 8 a.m. Sunday morning, officials said.
The Indianapolis Airport Authority indicated the plane dropped 10,000 feet mid-flight, but a spokesman for ExpressJet, which operates United Express, said there was a "pressurization issue" on board and could not confirm just how far the plane dropped.
Airline spokesman Jarek Beem noted that it is standard procedure for planes to drop to a 10,000 foot altitude when there is a pressure issue on board.
According to Jeff Dutton, Communications Manager at Indianapolis Airport Authority, passengers were checked out once the flight landed but no one was taken to a hospital.
“Some passengers were complaining of headaches and ear problems so they diverted to Indianapolis," Dutton said.
The plane landed safely around 8:30 a.m. Sunday.
ExpressJet spokesperson Been said the airline is working to accommodate customers hoping to get to Chicago as maintenance technicians look into what caused the pressurization issue.